In what has been a great second half of young talent arriving at The Show, the Baltimore Orioles have called up future superstar Manny Machado from Double-A. Has the early success of Mike Trout and Bryce Harper encouraged clubs to call up their top young talent? Machado projects as the next great shortstop in Major League baseball and must be secured at all costs. While young arms have been getting their shot often, the addition of Mike Olt in Texas and now Machado, are early presents for those fortunate enough to land them.
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Manny Machado SS Baltimore- In a surprise move, the Orioles bring up the future of the franchise. 20-year-old Manny Machado gets the call from Double-A Bowie, where he hit eleven home runs and drove in 59 in 109 games. The third overall pick in the 2010 draft, Machado is a natural shortstop, but could be destined for third base, at least initially. Machado is considered the #11 prospect in the game according to Baseball America. Machado was a South Atlantic League All-Star in 2011 and played in the Futures Game last month. Machado is the real deal and projects as the next great shortstop in baseball.
Mile Olt Utility Texas- If your league is shying away from Olt due to his current platoon arrangement, you need to grab him now! With Adrian Beltre entrenched at third base, Olt had been playing first in the minors to prepare for his current role with the Rangers. Olt is two for nine in four games since getting called up from Double-A Frisco. Olt has big time power, as evidenced by 27 home runs in 94 games in the minors this season. Expect Olt's role to expand and also see time in left field. Fantasy owners truly blessed to have talent like Machado and Olt arrive mid-season.
Dominic Brown OF Philadelphia- Dominic Brown remains a favorite project of mine. We are told Brown will play every day which greatly enhances his value. Brown has power and speed potential, but has yet to show either since getting called up from Triple-A Lehigh Valley. In eight games, Brown is seven for 24 with a pair of RBI. Brown didn't fare well when given a chance last season and has fought injuries at the minor league level in 2012. Bottom line....Brown figures to be the Phillies long term option in center field and is worthy of a long look.
Brett Jackson OF Chicago Cubs- During most any summer week, Brett Jackson would be the headline transaction. Called up Sunday from Triple-A Iowa, Jackson showed power (15 home runs) and speed (27 stolen bases) in the minors this season. The Cubs are in full rebuild mode and Jackson should be given ample opportunity to show his stuff. Jackson is two for eleven in three games since getting the call. Jackson needs to cut down on strikeouts, but is the future of the Cubs outfield.
Jim Henderson RP Milwaukee- With so much hitting arriving on the scene, we were going to focus on bats but cannot let a potential closer go unmentioned. The mess also known as the Milwaukee bullpen has a new option in Jim Henderson. Unlike our elite hitting prospects featured this week, Henderson isn't a can't miss youngster. Turning 30 this Fall, Henderson was called up from Triple-A two weeks ago. Henderson did post stellar numbers at Nashville with a 1.69 ERA and 56 strikeouts in 48 innings. What is most important though, is clean saves against the mighty Reds each of the last two nights.
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Tom Blaz is a writer for Fantasy Alarm and co-owner of The Recruiting Eagle a website focusing on Auburn University Athletics.
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